They had the characteristic stripe which identifies Pacific chorus frogs. It runs from the nostril, across the eye. They also have toepads, and according to this reference, no other frogs in their range have these features. Despite how visible they are in these close up images, with the naked eye, they are so dwarfed by their habitat, they might as well be raindrops in a rainforest.
Snowy Egrets do sometimes change nesting locations, but they also show loyalty to the same sites year after year. This tree was actually an emergency roost for them after their previous habitat was razed for the same reasons: residents in a housing development complained. So, they were evicted from one home, found another, and now face the same conundrum of locating a safe place to raise their babies.
Buddhists have a term, samma sankappa, which loosely interpreted speaks to "RIGHT INTENT": the intent of goodwill and harmlessness. That's obviously an over-simplification. But in deciding what to share without completely withholding, intent and possible outcome inform my wildlife choices. Will sharing this information have the effect of harm or harmlessness? Or better yet, can sharing this achieve some possible benefit to the animals?
As this photo suggests in a literal and metaphorical sense, we humans are intertwined on the landscape with the lizards and lichens of the desert, so much so that the extinction of one, the absence of, say, a honey bee will mean the extinction of us, too. And this calls to mind the David Hume notion that “the life of man is of no greater importance to the universe than that of an oyster," except for the fact that we have the power and choice to exert a bigger influence in the outcome for ourselves and for the oyster.
Taking time to observe without my camera, I saw a pervasive nervousness. They were not going about their business in comfort. They were attuned to everything new in their environment, stopping their feeding or play for the slightest disruption. So although it disappointed me to put my camera away, I decided I would investigate their history before I tried photographing them again.
The shorebirds are back, the ones who took flight months ago and flew thousands of miles here to forage and rest; • Hungry Brown Pelicans are chasing the herring and sardines, taking cues from each other as they amass with the tides; • Little sea otters are growing up, learning to swim, dive and find mussels under the tutelage of mom (otter dads don’t help);
A heartfelt thank you to writer and wildlife rehabilitator Suzie Gilbert, for featuring my piece at the 10,000 Birds website. It’s an essay about how a stray cat became a transformative influence in my life, teaching me the value of animals — particularly wild animals — outside the walls of my own home. If you’re a wildlife rehabber, an accidental rescuer or thinking about getting involved with wildlife, I highly recommend Susie’s book about that very process. I’ve posted a link to the book below.
A few minutes passed and I couldn't shake the thought of the slow cricket in the tempest. I Googled crickets and indoors and food sources and realized that I wasn't even sure what type of cricket he was, or if he even was a cricket, or where he actually belonged. I didn't know if he was healthy or if he'd come indoors for respite. And there I'd left him standing in the dark 'n' stormy, a weather system getting so thick, it would soon be dark rum and ginger beer falling from the sky.
Beavers are vegetarians, and lily tubers are a favorite foodstuff. Because beavers are crepuscular (loving the twilight), you'll see them most often at dawn and dusk, which accounts for the predictable in-time of this beaver family.